Friday, 30 November 2012
Sunday, 25 November 2012
"Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptised with water but in a few days you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit". Act 1:4-5. There was much anticipation in the air as they gathered together for felllowship. It had become a habit this gathering. It didn't matter that the room was small and dingy. They moved around greeting and welcoming each other. Over the din of the small chit chats, a husky male voice raised a song. It was Peter. All those years spent fishing had taken its toll on his voice.It was slightly hoarse and hesitant. Everyone turned and looked at Peter. How he'd grown and matured since the Lord appeared to all of them. Andrew joined in the singing. A glimmer of tear rolled down Peter's cheeks as the other disciples joined in the song. How far they'd all come. The reformed tax collector, the fishermen, and the women- ordinary people whose life had been transformed by THE CALL. With outstretched arms they lifted up their voices to heaven. In unison they sang, a heartfelt song for the fulfilment of the promise-THE PROMISE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. It didn't matter that they were considered strange and uncouth they dared to believe Him that had made the call. It didn't even cross their minds to doubt, after all the promise of His ressurection was not a myth, they'd seen Him with their very eyes. They'd even broken bread together and Thomas' had his doubts wiped away at His appearance. In that room, they were ONE. Not divided by gender, status, or occupation but a unified expectation of the promise. "Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting" Act 2:2. Wow! They wondered with elation! The manifestation of the Holy Spirit was more than they imagined! Tears streamed unchecked down Peter's cheeks as he heard the other disciple speak in other tongues. Amazing! What He was experiencing was far above his craziest expectations. Amazing!!! The disciples experienced the supernatural because they obeyed Jesus's instruction and dared to believe. They dared to believe Him that promised becaused He had a track record of being true to His words.
Friday, 23 November 2012
"I hope he likes this food oh", I muttered under my breath. "I'm seriously not in the mood for little boy tantrums. “OH God let Josh eat his lunch without any drama", I prayed while dishing his lunch of boiled potatoes and chicken curry sauce into a bowl. From the corner of my eyes, I watched as he hopped to the dining table and without much ado started eating his food with a smile and even a twinkle in eye. With baby fingers, he picked up the vegetables in the food and started humming a nursery rhyme oblivious to the stunned look on my face! You might be wondering what the fuss is all about in serving lunch to a 6 year old boy! Well, the thing is Josh does not eat potatoes no matter what it is smothered in for lunch! My son prefers pounded yam (a delicacy favoured by Nigerians and some Africans). He loves it so much that it has to be ready and waiting for him when he gets home from school. He doesn't mind having it three times a day if given. Wonder where he got that from? Hmmmmm! Ok! I confess! It’s me! *sighs* I love food. Nothing gets between me and my food (and it shows....please pray for me). While pregnant with josh, I was heavily diabetic and practically spent a better part of the nine months in the hospital. Despite my condition, I would sneak out of the hospital to eat pounded yam and egusi soup at an African restaurant (talk of being irresponsible! I knew the food was bad for me because of its high starchy contents but I couldn't resist its allure...sob! who wouldn't be?...sob).
Thursday, 22 November 2012
Church was awesome tonight. I mean you could feel the atmosphere charged up with the prayers of the saints. How I've missed the weekly prayer meetings. You actually don't know how much something or someone means to you until you lose them or are out of reach. I was away in Nigeria for seventeen days, barely had time to go to church, fellowship, study my bible or even pray (case of misplaced priorities). Had lots of places to visit and people to catch up with. In fact I was everywhere in that short spate of time that I barely had time for a proper rest. ` Nah wah for Nigeria! Don't get me wrong I love my place of birth but the stress is just too much compared with Ireland where the pace is less hectic and system much more organised(I said compared with Nigeria oh!). I remember almost having a heart attack on the drive home from the airport in Lagos. Every driver on the road kept blaring their horns and people kept dashing in and out of traffic. I screamed all the way and confessed my sins every time an errant driver overtook my brother who drove as crazily as the rest of them. Within a week of all the excitement of meeting family and friends, I had seriously had enough and couldn't wait to be back in Ireland. In six years, Ireland has become more than a place of Sojourn but has become HOME. Mind you, it hadn't always felt like home. Initially, it felt like a prison! I felt like I'd done something dreadful and I'd to be put away like a scarlet girl (you know in those schools that underage pregnant girls are put so they would not slur the family name). Over time, I've set up roots in Ireland, made friends and formed relationships. More importantly, I've grown and matured in my relationship with God. What has location got to do with my relationship with God you may ask? For me EVERYTHING! I had too much distraction in Nigeria. I was career obsessed and God took second place. For God to take priority, a surgical procedure had to be done. He had to take me out from the familiar and that included family, friends, a "fulfilling" career and a toxic relationship. It was painful initially but it was for my good that I might not miss out on the greater picture of God's plan for my life (yep, I learnt to change a light bulb all by myself....lol). The believer is called to a life of separation not necessarily a physical separation of being plucked from a particular location but a separation nevertheless from the world. Abraham was called out from his father's country and everything that was familiar to him in order to achieve God's purpose for his life. I'm sure it was hard for him why else would he be dragging Lot around him when the instruction given was clear enough.Gen 12:12 The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you". . The blessing of the promise came after the separation. Aside from being able to change a light bulb all by myself. Lol, I've learnt to trust God for provisions for the journey. He won't leave you hanging.For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughtsIsaiah 55:8-9". In the journey to fulfilment, you may have to lose friends, change habits and let go of the familiar but at the end it would be worth it. Don't believe me? Check out Abraham's profile in the bible, it says it all. After all is said and done, Home for the believer is not about a building or a particular place its about finding God and being CONTENT in him. In Christ, I AM HOME. My family....love and miss you!
Wednesday, 21 November 2012
"Old people are smelly and creepy", she said wrinkling her nose. "eeeew", she added for emphasis and shuddered as if cold. "Beyonce is the coolest woman ever and I want to be like her when I grow up", she continued with a smile. The rest of the class bursted into laughter and erupted into an arguement on what is true beauty and what makes a person beatiful. I stared at the group of boys and girls in the youth sunday school and shuddered at the huge work ahead of me. "old people are beautiful! because they are old doesn't make them any less so", another said. "you will get old someday soon", contributed someone else. The joy of teaching! Its a mammoth task but one that I enjoy tremendously. Teaching the youths, mind you, the adults know too much already...lol. I watched my motley crew again as the arguements bounced back and forth, taking note of each contribution and thinking of answers to every question(did I say the adults know too much already? hmmm! I wonder where these kids get their information from...lol).
Monday, 19 November 2012
Thursday, 15 November 2012
I opened my mail this morning and was blessed by a personal reply to one of my posts. It did not only bless me, it inspired me to do more as it shows that in a way the stories are making an impact which makes the few moments spent slugging at my laptop worthwhile (don't mind me, I love what I do when I do get to do it *sigh* ..lol) The stories do not serve to inspire and bless you alone but encourage me as well. It also goes to show that every simple act we do goes a long a way to impact our immediate enviroment and the world at large. So what are you contributing into your world. Remember, the story about the slave girl in the book of 2 Kings 5? Her name is not mentioned but her simple act of good deed is recorded for generations to read and learn from. She was a slave serving in the house of Naaman,Commander of the Aram army. Despite his enviable position, Naaman had a problem-LEPROSY which this little slave girl had a solution to. What blew my mind about this girl is that she did not consider her inhonorable position as a slave or that she'd been taken from her family (probably never to be seen again) but rather saw an opportunity to be a blessing. She did not allow herself to be embittered by her circumstances but sought to be an object of blessing. A simple advice and recommendation to Naaman from a nameless slave girl set this army commander forth to his deliverance from a condition that had otherwise marred his life. Another simple act act of good deed is the story of the little boy that gave up his lunch for Jesus to feed five thousand people in John 6:1-13. I believe that the boy had more faith in his little fingers than all the disciples put together. Unlike kids that are naturally selfish, he gave up his lunch without a struggle because he knew that Jesus could use his little contribution to feed a much needy crowd. Moses did not know how powerful his shepard rod was until he lifted it up for God to part the red sea Gen 15:16. I'm sure it never crossed his mind that his simple rod could make the difference between life and death for the Israelites.
Monday, 12 November 2012
"Sometimes when you are the closest to your breakthrough the pressure is the greatest. You have come too far to give up now! –Joyce. That statement credited to renowned precher Joyce Mayer is so profound. Have you ever been pressed to use the toilet, with your bladder full to bursting and set to give out on you? You manage to hold on to the wee and at the first sighting of your house or nearest toilet, you start to leak? I have been there so many times that I have lost count. Embarrasing isn't it? If you ask any pregnant woman in her final trimester,most can barely wait to get the baby out and the pregnancy over with despite the initial excitement of pregnancy. I remember in my final weeks of college, I just couldn't wait for the whole experience to be over and done with. I had to consciously encourage myself to go to school and hand in my assignments. It became harder to study and remain motivated. What kept me going those last few weeks was the thought of all those hours I had already put on this academic pursuit. I couldn't imagine failure or failing. Not me! No way! The journey to achieving a Masters degree in International Communication had cost me a lot emotionally, financially, psycologically and physically. I barely had time for Joshua, my family or any social life at that. In the midst of life challenges, it so easy to give up entirely or cut corners. I had a colleague who dropped out from the M.A programm citing too much pressure on the home front and problems with two courses. You could literarily knock me senseless with a feather when she told me she was dropping out at the die minute. We had survived the worst hurdles and had submitted our second semester assignments and she was dropping out? "you are not serious", I told her but she looked me dead pan in the face and retirated that she was! I begged and cajoled, reminding her of how far we had come but there was no changing her mind. we had only our thesis left to work- on and she two courses to re-sit and she was dropping out! I understood her challenges but could not fathom why she would not push through. I have been believing God for a husband and its not been easy. The loneliness is worse;no one to share true intimacy with. There are times I want to only be with and around that "special somebody", not just anybody. In the midst of "my wait" different men have come into my life but none fit my vision of a husband. Have I been tempted to settle for less? Ofcourse I have.I'm as human and vulnerable as the next person(I'm not made of stone you know...lol). However I constantly remind myself that I've not waited this long or held unto Godly values to settle for just anyone that bats sexy lids or flaunt manly biceps at me.No sir!. More than ever before I'm convinced that my breakthrough is round the corner and all that is needed now was Godly confidence, restraint and trust. I'm not looking for Superman or even Robin but a born again Christian. Like my good friend and pastor would say "it is better to be happy and single than be married and miserable", Pastor Kingsley Okonkwo. Many of my friends are married and some are ready to toss "a friend" at me or have one idea or the other on how to nab a man but I've refused to bulge under the pressure of "age" or compare myself with my married younger cousins. Of a truth, I want to be married and desperately so in the last couple of weeks but I choose to lean on God's strength and trust Him to help me make it through to the very end. Afterall, the bible says in James 1:12 "Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him".